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Favorite Contemporary Writers

Sam Shepard is one of my favorite contemporary writers. I’m just reading a collection of his short stories titled “Great Dream of Heaven” which contains the story “Berlin Wall Piece”. That actually is one of the most significant short stories for me in my life. You think I’m exaggerating? – No, I’m not. But perhaps you will read it, so you can decide for yourself.

Like each good story it cannot be retold – so I refrain from trying to.

But Shepard made me tell my own story. Like his protagonist who couldn’t remember what happened in the eighties I wondered whatever happened in the seventies? Since I was a Teenager then a lot of stories came to my mind, among them Andrea and the Teenage Love Story, that didn’t turn out to be a love story after all.

Short Stories have the great benefit of being short. I like that as I do not have much time to read. A novel is a challenge for me. I read the four first “Rabbit Novels” by John Updike with great pleasure. Rabbit was my steady companion for more than a year and I was sorry when we finally had to part after the fourth volume. I started the fifth Rabbit book, “Rabbit Remembered” – but the fire wouldn’t catch. To me Updike is one of the great writers of our time. The Nobel Prize has rendered itself irrelevant and ridiculous ignoring Updike … and Roth.

Who is your favorite contemporary writer? Which literary form do you like best? Do you think the blog post is a literary form itself?

Update: I wasn’t yet aware when I wrote this post. John Updike died on January 27th 2009. May he rest in peace, honor to his memory. Strange I didn’t catch the news, as I was thinking a lot about his works recently.

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